Ok – let me tell you a story. One of the adventures we did this summer was head to EAA to watch the day and night air show and Maddox was so intrigued about the Parachute teams. All he wanted to see, all he wanted to talk about, all he asked about – everything about parachutes. One of the planes they had on display was an old coast guard plane that had a manikin in a full body suit of; a parachute, back up chute and a helmet. We talked about how when they leave the plane they pull the cord and it brings them to safety. I’m not really sure why back in the day they had a full hockey mask but mom told him was that they didn’t hurt themselves jumping out of the plane.
Today, on the drive home, we see a paraglider in the sky, just quietly floating along, the parachute was red, yellow and blue and Maddox was fascinated that he started talking about parachutes again. This part of the conversation, got to be silly as I think Maddox was really over tired, he started getting the little kid giggles, so envision him just giggling away throughout this whole part of the conversation. I explained to him that people, when they parachute, jump out of a perfectly good airplane! He started giggling and asked if I ever did it. My response was, No! I have no reason to jump out of a perfectly good airplane! >more giggles< Then he asked Nick if he ever did it and Nick hasn’t but told Maddox that he did hangliding when he was younger. Then Maddox asked if was wearing a parachute and Nick replied no and Maddox said that was silly >more giggles<.
Then Maddox proceeded to tell me that he wants to jump out a perfectly good airplane! My immediate response was – ‘you can do that when you’re 18’ as Nick looks at me for my shocked response! In my brain, I am thinking – holy crap kid! I’m not ready for you to be making these big of jumps just yet?! We have to get through the first day of 4K first! Then Maddox was giggling and talking if he was going to wear a parachute (at one point he said he didn’t want to) and then he explained exactly how he wanted to parachute: would find a perfectly good air plane, get to a really tall height, put on his helmet, JUMP out of the plane, he would pull his cord and float to the ground. The kid had so many details planned out for this like he’s thought of this before! >insert more kid giggles<
Here’s what happened in my brain waves as a mom, not that I really want Maddox to jump out of plane because so many things can go wrong, but I really hope he doesn’t lose that sense of adventure and being fearless when he grows up. I look at myself and my internal fear of heights has me scared that I don’t think I could ever overcome it (ask Nick, I left him hanging by himself at a roller coaster once). My immediate thought (and it’s sad) was that the air is so thin the higher that you go up that I hope he would be ok to do it and enjoy it! CF has changed my perspective so much that the fear of him not breathing at those levels over came the overall fears of my child being safe jumping out of a perfectly good airplane (or helicopter – the Red Bull team was jumping off of their helicopter which was cool).
Later on in the conversation during our drive home, Nick pretended to be Maddox and commented, ‘look mom, we built a huge ramp so we can jump over the house or off the roof with our dirt bike’s’, now that wouldn’t surprise me as much as broken bones will eventually heal and scars are a story to tell.